STOCKTON Heath's Labour parish councillors are calling for a 'modest, ring-fenced contribution' from parish funds to help save the village library as fears intensify.

With LiveWire's public consultation ending on Friday, parish councillors Sue Barlow, Nick Bent, Helen Dutton, Angela Fell and Laurence Murphy are challenging neighbouring parish councils to match any funds from Stockton Heath residents.

At the recent Stockton Heath Parish Council meeting, during a formal presentation by LiveWire, Cllr Bent raised the possibility of a small increase in the parish precept to support the library – but on the strict condition that the library remains open as a public, statutory library service with a free book lending service.

Labour parish councillors are also now challenging the Liberal Democrat dominated Appleton and Grappenhall and Thelwall parish councils to pay a 'fair share' towards saving Stockton Heath Library.

Library membership figures requested by Cllr Barlow and released by LiveWire, who run the borough's library service, show that more of the regular users of Stockton Heath Library live in Appleton parish, 1,432, rather than Stockton Heath parish, 1,211, while 1,106 live in Grappenhall and Thelwall parish.

Cllr Murphy, who is a former Stockton Heath borough councillor, said: "The Liberal Democrats need to put their money where their mouth is on libraries, especially as it was the Liberal Democrat-Tory coalition Government that cut council budgets to the bone.

"We are all committed to saving Stockton Heath Library but all three of the parishes who benefit from it should pay something towards saving it."

Under the plans, LiveWire would close the village library and replace it with a lending locker.